Date: Thursday, February 18th, 2016, 13:00
Category: Hardware, iOS, iPhone, News, security
A bit of an apology from Apple following the “Error 53” controversy.
Apple on Thursday released an updated version of iOS 9.2.1, bypassing what the company has admitted to be a factory test of the Home button during start up.
Apple released an updated version of iOS 9.2.1 to restore newer iPhones that were disabled by Error 53. This iOS update will prevent future iPhones from experiencing Error 53 if they have their Home buttons repaired by a third-party repair shop. This update can only be installed by connecting the iPhone to iTunes on a Mac or PC, not over the air.
Originally, Apple asked iOS users who had experienced Error 53 to contact Apple Support. Today, there is also a brand-new support page dedicated to helping users repair their iPhones that were affected by Error 53.
Even though this iOS update will have your iPhone working properly again, it will not restore Touch ID capabilities. The only way to restore Touch ID is to get the Home button repaired or replaced by Apple, as to prevent third-party repair shops from potentially accessing your fingerprint data.
The Error 53 controversy gained steam when it was seen as Apple pushing users to go to Apple itself for repairs as opposed to cheaper third-party outfits. This anti-competitive reasoning behind Error 53 even led a law firm to start preparing a class-action lawsuit accusing the iPhone maker of intentionally disabling its own devices.
After first claiming Error 53 was a security feature to prevent unauthorized tampering of Touch ID, Apple is now saying that the error message was a factory test “designed to check whether Touch ID works properly before the device leaves the factory.”
Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.